x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Inmate cleared of Dubai prison rape charge

Inmate of convicted rapist accused him of slipping drugs into his coffee then taking advantage after he passed out.

DUBAI // A rapist serving time in Dubai Central Prison was yesterday acquitted of drugging his cellmate and raping him last Ramadan.

The Iranian S?M, 29, had told prosecutors that S?A, 29, from Yemen, offered him a cup of coffee after prayers on September 3.

“I drank it but it tasted bitter,” he said, adding that when he asked the defendant why the coffee tasted strange, he was told it was a different brand.

The cellmate said he began to feel drowsy, and thought that was suspicious.

“It’s unusual for me to sleep at that time as I stay up until dawn to recite the Quran,” he said.

He said that as he was drifting off he felt a movement behind him.

“He [the defendant] asked me, ‘Don’t you want someone to sleep with you?’, and I said no, then slept.”

He told prosecutors he woke about 11am in pain and figured out what had happened.

“I asked S?A in front of the two men about the incident and he confessed to drugging me using his medications, then having sex with me,” he said.

The Iranian said the other men told the defendant to sleep somewhere else that night, and said how shocked they were because he was a religious man who led them in prayers.

He said the defendant insulted the two men before about 100 inmates gathered, stripped off his clothes and assaulted him.

An Emirati police officer, M?A, 26, testified that when he was told of the incident he questioned both men.

“The victim was contradicting himself about being drugged,” the officer said.

“Once he told me he was unknowingly drugged and then told me he has asked SA to provide him with the drugs.”

A forensics expert said no DNA evidence linking the defendant  to the crime was found on the victim. He said traces of drugs found in the accuser’s urine and blood were not enough to rob him of consciousness or his ability to resist an assault.

“I did not rape him. It was in his consent and I had slept with him several times before in his consent as well,” the defendant said. “He asked me to give him some of my medication, I did not drug him.”

salamir@thenational.ae